Collecting data without rhyme or reason – this is how the mantra of today's data economy can be summed up in one sentence. This is neither ecological, nor economical or social. The solution: Stop sharing data, start sharing algorithms! Instead of sending all the data to several servers to be evaluated by algorithms, let's leave the data where it is, and evaluate it directly on our end devices by sending algorithms.
54 % Dark data
Dark data is unclassified, i.e. unused data whose content and use is unknown. This group is growing faster and faster.
32 % ROT data
The acronym stands for »redundant, obsolete and trivial«, in short »data trash«, but here at least you know what the data contains, which makes it a little less toxic than dark data.
14 % Business critical data
Data whose content and purpose is known. It needs this data to keep economic and social processes going. We all need it, so collecting data is not bad per se.
Hard to imagine, but almost all companies are engaged in a really expensive »hobby«! In a more reserved company that has accumulated about 250 terabytes of data, the estimated total costs of annual data storage is about € 1 million per year. If one assumes that this company also collects the estimated 86 % »data trash«, the immense waste of money quickly becomes striking. Not to talk about the legal risks, as the assumed 250 terabytes correspond to roughly 580 million files. The content of more than half, i.e. just over 300 million files, is completely unknown. Welcome to data protection hell!
Over 85 % of data, as we know, is dark data and ROT data. It is estimated that in 2020 the global energy demand for dark and ROT data was 9.2 million tons of CO2. Equivalent to the amount a car consumes when it circles the earth nearly 1 million times. And it's getting more and more. Every year, the amount of data increases by about 27 %. In 2025 the amount of data will be 175 zettabyte. To put this into perspective: 175 zettabyte correspond to around 350 trillion films in standard quality – that's a number with twelve zeros!
80 % of executives see data as a success factor for their company. This is also reflected in the price of data. But there is one side that does not participate in the profit: the data producers. Or in other words, all of us. We can use services and platforms supposedly for free, but the price we have to pay for them is not transparent to us. We users have lost control over our data and often we don't even know the consequences, because they are usually indirect. The data oligarchs have created an economic system with us, the unpaid workers who produce data for them day in, day out, free of charge. The result: the violation of our privacy.
It depends on the type and quality of the data. On where they come from. But no one can say exactly. One clue could be how valuable a user was considered to be when selling a company to one of the data oligarchs.
When it comes to personal data, these problems can easily be solved if the data producers get back into the driver's seat! It is a common concept that somebody who produces something controls how and for what purpose it is produced, and determines the price. But in today's data economy it's not us, the data producers, who have control, it's the data consumer. We are here to change that back in the right direction by developing the polyPod – a »Super App infrastructure« that turns our end devices into sustainable, environmentally friendly, socially and ecologically responsible data centres.
Unused computing power of our smartphones can be shared for privacy driven Big Data evaluations in exchange for a digital income. Since all calculations are carried out on our end devices, data storage capacities for personal data in data centres are saved and thus also a lot of CO2.